Monday 15 August 2016

Strange Star, Emma Carroll

Pages: 320
Publisher: Faber
Release Date: 7th July 2016
Edition: UK paperback, review copy

Other Titles by this Author: Frost Hollow Hall, The Girl Who Walked on Air, In Darkling Wood, The Snow Sister

The year of 1816 felt extraordinary, and all because of a strange sort of star in the sky…

Lake Geneva, Switzerland

Early one summer’s morning, a servant boy named Felix delivers an invitation. Tonight, at the mysterious Villa Diodati, there will be ghost stories that promise to ‘freeze the blood’.

As darkness falls, the guests arrive. The storytelling begins. Then comes an unexpected knock at the door. Felix discovers a girl on the doorstep. She's travelled a long way to tell her tale, and now he must listen.

But be warned: hers is no ordinary ghost story. Sometimes the truth is far more terrifying.

After reading Emma Carroll’s The Snow Sister last year I knew that I needed to read her full length novels – and I thoroughly enjoyed Strange Star.

I’m a huge fan of Frankenstein, Mary Shelley and basically just everything about the Romantics so I was beside myself when I learned about the premise and inspiration for this book. It was super cool to meet Mary, Percy, Polidori and Byron – and I desperately wish that I could have been in that room with them on that famous night. Even in Carroll’s rather creepy version!

Soon after meeting the Romantics at Lake Geneva we move to the small English village of Sweepfield where a mysterious scientist has moved to town. The cold, snowy Regency setting was brimming with atmosphere and the mysteries Lizzie and Peg uncovered and the adventures they fell into were genuinely chilling and completely wonderful. I kind of wish I'd saved Strange Star for a cold and gloomy evening! This is definitely one to put on your Halloween reading list.

Strange Star is a wonderfully vivid and perfectly creepy homage to the masterpiece that is Frankenstein and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I really hope this gets younger readers intrigued enough to take the plunge into Shelley’s novel.

Thanks to Faber for the review copy.


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